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Delta’s senior population and their needs continues to grow. The five active companion volunteers in our area are busy transporting and building relationships while caring for the existing twenty seniors who have requested service. It is a privilege to serve our senior residents as well as helping those who care for their loved ones with much needed respite care. I am told often by seniors how much it means to them to have someone committed to visit every week, sometimes more than once a week. The companions also find fulfillment and purpose in their serving; knowing that they are making a difference in another person’s life.

I was recently in Tok training three companions who are now serving four clients. Making a difference in lives. I have confidence that this is only the beginning of growth for the program in the Tok area, as well as an improvement in many lives through the service of these companions willing to give of their time and heart.

The program serves clients 65-years-old or older, or any age adult with a disability through the Senior Corps Senior Companion Program. The goal of the program is to help our aging community population remain in their homes, enjoying the comfort it affords and the memories it holds. 

Companions help facilitate independence while developing meaningful friendships that can be lasting. The program helps with transportation, nutrition, home chores, wellness & advocacy, respite, some personal care, and companionship

The program also pays for a full background check and reimburses any upfront cost. Companions must meet a financial requirement based on annual earnings of less than $31,200.00 for a single household/ $42,260 for a household of two. The volunteer companion must be 55-years-of-age or older.

The service is free to the senior population and companion volunteers are reimbursed a small stipend per hour and mileage/meal reimbursement which is paid monthly. The stipend and reimbursements are all non-taxable and do not affect any government assistance you may receive. The application process is not complicated. 

I am ready to assist anyone wishing to be a part of this program, either as a Companion or Client. Just give me a call at (907) 987-2976 or email scp.delta@alaska.net For the Tok area, a person may contact Betty Denny at the Upper Tanana Aging Program for a Senior In-Take form or a Companion Enrollment form. Betty can be reached by phone at the Senior Center (907) 883-5157 ext. 111. All forms can be faxed to the Delta office at (907) 895-1806, or mailed to: Deborah Snyder, Supervisor, Senior Companion Program, PO Box 1188, Delta Junction, AK 99737-1188.

Albert Schweitzer once said:

“I don't know what your destiny will be, but one thing I know: the only ones among you who will be really happy are those who will have sought and found how to serve.”